This Country Reached 100% Vaccination in April. Now, COVID Is Cancelling Christmas

By Neil Campbell | November 17, 2021
Neil lives in Canada and writes about society and politics.
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A man poses for a vaccine acceptance photo. The territory of Gibraltar vaccinated everyone in April, but is still cancelling Christmas due to COVID
A Spanish worker in Gibraltar poses for a promotional vaccine acceptance photo on April, 6, 2021. Although the British Overseas Territory has dosed almost 3 injections for every single man, woman, and child in its population, the Government of Gibraltar is still cancelling its own Christmas activities and encouraging the public to follow suit. (Image: CRISTINA QUICLER/AFP via Getty Images)

While one of the world’s gold standards for vaccine acceptance may have stamped the hallmark of distributing a Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine injection to every man, woman, and child in April, the country recently announced Christmas was cancelled, precisely due to COVID running wild. 

Gibraltar is a small British Overseas Territory, serving as a peninsula on the Southern coast of Spain. The area, with its 6.7 square kilometer landmass and population of less than 34,000 people, is the size of a mid-sized town.

Nonetheless, Gibraltar was hailed in mainstream media as a hero in the struggle to save the world’s lives from the stubborn gain of function-created SARS-CoV-2 because it succeeded in administering two doses of injection on average to 100 percent of its population by April, according to website Covidvax Live.

A siren song

In an April 27 puff piece published by Slate titled What Life Is Like in a Fully Vaccinated Country, author Josef Bouska waxes poetic on the establishment narrative that vaccines are mankind’s panacea to end the pandemic, “In small places, everything is amplified. The highs are higher, the lows lower. Three months ago, I was living in the country with the world’s highest COVID rate.” 

“Today I’m in the safest place on Earth—and my home hasn’t moved an inch.”

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Bouska weaves a tale of a Gibraltar who watched Spain get hit by the pandemic and “knew it was only a matter of time before it struck us too” as a result of its 15,000 daily migrant workers. But citizens could rest easy because “the government was ready and handled things better than most” with a “strict spring lockdown” that was “followed by a relaxed summer and reasonably controlled autumn.”

“Anyone who sneezed was ushered to a COVID swab, resulting in the highest number of tests per capita in the world. Infections were kept at bay, casualties remained in single digits. Watching how badly Europe and United States [sic] got hit, we felt blessed. We felt safe.”

Unfortunately when Christmas of 2020 came and positive PCR tests were made to sound scary in the media, Bourska “didn’t want to send [his] son to school anymore” because active cases went from 60 to 1,200 and COVID-associated deaths spiked from 7 in all of 2020 to 71 in January alone. 

“Fear became palpable. Boneheads who mocked masks and distancing on social media suddenly fell quiet,” lamented the author, who breathed a sigh of relief when big brother central government saved the day with another “tough lockdown” that “eventually brought the situation under control.”

“But the damage had already been done,” Bourska bemoaned. “Gibraltar’s per capita death toll soared to the very top of the global ranking, where it remained until the last week of April.”

Fortunately for the author, hope was on the horizon, “Just as the infections avalanche culminated in mid-January, the first shipment of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines arrived from Britain. Then soon came another, and another.”

“Authorities didn’t leave anything to chance this time. The registration was simple and inoculations moved at a blistering pace. By the end of March, about 85 percent of the adult population had received both jabs, well over the strictest thresholds of herd immunity.”

Speaking for all of Gibraltar’s 33,691 residents and all 15,000 daily migrant workers, Bourska thanked the administration for salvation, “We feel blessed and safe.”

Slate wasn’t alone in its rhetoric. CNN Travel published a similarly-natured article on April Fools’ Day titled Gibraltar Has Vaccinated Most of Its Adults. This Is What It’s Like Now, which opened in the following way: “People clinking wine glasses in bars and restaurants. Fans watching live soccer and boxing matches. As summer approaches, life has almost returned to normal in one tiny territory in southern Europe — and there’s a very good reason why.

“Almost everyone is vaccinated.”

An Oct. 22 article by Smithsonian Magazine cited Gibraltar’s use of a “fever pass” in 1804 to combat yellow fever as supporting evidence for the veracity of our modern day, centralized vaccine passport QR code regime.

Ironically, the article notes that 19th century scientists had realized that people who survived yellow fever developed total immunity, which was called “non-liability” at the time, and that the fever passes were actually utilized for those with natural immunity to demonstrate non-liability amid heavy quarantine measures.

Speedy uptake

According to Covidvax Live, Gibraltar’s distribution began on Jan. 10 and quickly reached a doses per 100 persons figure of 1.0 only a few weeks later on Feb. 25. And while the territory has always counted migrant workers among its statistics, it hit the 2.0 milestone on April 22.

Just days prior on April 8, Gibraltar announced the release of essentially all COVID measures enacted.

New doses registered per day stayed hot through May and then quickly died off in June and July, registering as low as 6. By this time, more than 77,000 doses had already been administered.

The government announced the country had seen its first case of the Delta Variant of SARS-CoV-2 on June 4.

Vaccination uptake again picked up sharply on Oct. 12 when 664 people accepted injection. The numbers have remained mostly in the triple digits since. As of Nov. 17, Gibraltar has administered 94,845 doses, amounting to 2.82 doses per resident.

Notably, vaccination of the 12 to 15 age bracket did not begin until Oct. 21. The release for the achievement stated, “The plan was to vaccinate over 700 young people by the end of the school day, however, we received a high uptake and thanks to the hard work of our dedicated staff we exceeded our expectations and vaccinated nearly 750 12-15 year olds.”

The territory’s October uptick undoubtedly also corresponded with the enactment of a Pfizer-BioNTech booster injection program for people aged over 50 or who work in health care on Oct. 11.

The move was first announced on Sept. 16 when the Government of Gibraltar followed the lead of an announcement made by the United Kingdom.

Gibraltar announced in a press release that it would begin distributing the influenza vaccine at the same venues.

Christmas celebrations put on notice

Data for the pandemic issued by the Government of Gibraltar is severely lacking. The territory’s website had last published a COVID-19 press conference on April 22, and its Coronavirus Statistics sidebar has not been updated since June 27.

All the same, the website still managed to boast about receiving another 4,860 doses of the Pfizer injection for distribution on Nov. 12. 

“In light of the dramatic increase in the active cases of COVID-19 in the community, it is important to continue building immunity against COVID-19 and everyone who is eligible is strongly encouraged to take up the offer of a booster vaccination when offered it,” read the release.

The same day, the administration issued a second statement where the public was “urged to be cautious and reduce mixing,” reminding residents “that it is essential that the public conduct themselves in a cautious and sensible manner bearing in mind that we are still in a global pandemic and that people are losing their lives every day all over the world.”

Statistics in the release blamed a lack of covid-zero on: 

  • “A number of organised events” that “have had adult positive cases associated with them”;
  • “Separate community outbreaks related to different faith gatherings”;
  • And noted that “it is also clear from the data that there has been a great increase of transmission in the workplace.”

In response, the government said it “intends to cancel a number of its own functions including official Christmas parties, official receptions and similar gatherings,” and called on the public to follow suit by exercising “their own judgement in this respect bearing in mind the current advice given.”

“This consideration should include the number of persons, the setting whether indoor or outdoor, the degree of ventilation if indoor and whether those attending are vaccinated, elderly or vulnerable.”

The statement added, “The Government strongly advises against any large informal social events, parties or receptions being held over at least the next four weeks while the vaccine booster programme is rolled out.”

Gibraltar also said to be able to “maintain the current state of relative normality”that “it is vital that the public follow the guidance of the Director of Public Health and take every reasonable precaution to reduce transmission of the virus and keep themselves and their loved ones safe.”

Even with an effective 282 percent vaccination rate, the administration still mandates masking, calling it “a great way to protect yourself, customers, clients, friends and family members.”

It also called on the public to implement a policy where, when meeting indoors, “a window should be open for at least 10 minutes every hour” and for the continued practice of social distancing and hand washing.

“Take note of those who remain in close proximity to you. Be ready to provide this information if asked by the Contact Tracing Bureau,” added the instructions.

Citizens were told to remain vigilant about whom they associate with over the holiday season, “If there are significant numbers of people present, or expected to attend, who come from outside Gibraltar, it is important to consider that they may not be vaccinated or that they might be incubating/ carrying [sic] the virus.”

Despite the hysteria, according to the Public Health Gibraltar website, slightly more than 500 positive PCR tests have been registered from Nov. 1 to Nov. 14 out of roughly 12,530 administered.

The territory is actually lucky, having only suffered 98 COVID-associated deaths since the pandemic began. The 97th was incurred in the second week of October, and #96 in the fourth week of August.

In fact, from the beginning of March until Nov. 14, Public Health Gibraltar registered only four COVID deaths, but has processed a staggering 211,721 PCR tests with only 2,260 positives.

Gibraltar’s data may prove inconvenient for the central global establishment pro-vaccination narrative. While an Oct. 12 article by news.com.au utilized data from aggregator Our World in Data to promote the territory for its vaccine acceptance figures, as of time of writing, the website pulls no data and cites no statistics.